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Categorized | From the Pulpit

We shall overcome

Pastor Kristi Rhodes

Hillcrest Community Church Cedar Springs

This year has been very difficult, to say the least, for most of the entire world. Fear and hatred seem to have taken over common sense in so many people.

Nicky Gumble shared that on March 31, 1968, in the last speech Martin Luther King ever made, he repeated the phrase “we shall overcome” over and over again. He was echoing the words of folksinger Joan Baez, who in 1963 led a crowd of 300,000 people in singing “We shall overcome.” The song speaks of overcoming, of discovering hope and a future amid adversity.

Love is the most powerful force in the world. We will only overcome fear, hate and evil through love. This was the message of Martin Luther King who said, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.”

The Bible from Genesis to Revelation tells of the greatest love story ever written. Real life involves many struggles, fears, trials, tests, temptations, difficulties and battles. Jesus said, we should not expect an easy life. He said, “In this world, you will have trouble, but take heart (fear not), I have overcome the world” (John 16:33 NIV).   The good news is, that in Christ you can be an overcomer. You can have peace in the midst of chaos.

God is the source of light and love. God is love. God determines what love is, not the other way around. Christmas reminds us of the greatest gift ever given. The gift of Love, Light, Peace, Joy, Hope Forgiveness, Mercy and Grace, all wrapped up in One bundle—the Christ Child, Jesus which is the gift of God.  

Jesus said, “While I am in the world, I am the Light of the world” (John 9:5). As Christ followers, Christ is IN us so in Christ, WE become the light of the world, (Matthew 5:14 NIV). When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the Light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life.” (John 8:12 NIV).  It is God’s love that overcomes evil.  A.W. Tozer said, “A scared world needs a fearless church.”  

God’s love is not a weak or frail love. It is backed up by his power and might. God’s people will “tell of the glory of your kingdom and speak of your might, so that all people may know of your mighty acts…” This is something you can rely on “through all generations,” for God’s kingdom is an everlasting kingdom…and endures through all generations. The Lord is trustworthy in all he promises and faithful in all he does. (Ps 145:11-13 NIV).  

Will you receive the gift of Jesus this Christmas? Open the door of your heart and let His Light chase away the darkness and fear! What is Christmas without Christ? Without Christ, there is no Christmas. Merry Christmas! Many blessings to you. 

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